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I am Sandra - faithful steward. listener. shepherd. dream believer. hard worker. collects brass bells, boots. Jesus follower. contented. star gazer. homemaker. farmer. prayer warrior. country woman. reader. traveler. writer. homebody. living life large.

Wednesday, September 02, 2009

A Stack of Quilts and Books

~ A Stack of Quilts, Fleece Throw and Scarves ~

It's been mentioned before I've begun an exercise program. Some friends asked, "don't you get enough exercise on the farm?" and the answer to that is, "yeah,'s not aerobic exercise, it's not continuous exercise and it's too varied to do much strength building on a continuous basis. So, for the past two months I've been doing aerobics, some swimming and yoga and it's killing me. I figure I'll be as good looking a corpse as the next older woman standing beside me -smile-. Twice a week I do two hours, one after the other, of Zumba aerobics, then yoga. Once a week I do purely weights for strength building and then yoga to end the week. Why am I telling you this? I'm not really sure except that, right now, I'm sucking air like a guppy because I've just finished both classes. I didn't grow up with exercise, I grew up with work and even though exercise is good for me, I rather bemoan the time taken away from doing "something productive". To close out this thought...please, give me your thoughts? Encouragement? Support? Words of advice?

Something productive, for the past while has meant quilting. When the computer had to go to the computer doc, I went on a quilting and reading binge. I read a few really interesting books and then some "cozy mysteries" for the shear enjoyment. One non-fiction book was "In the Footsteps of Marco Polo", the adventure of the two young men who, in the 1990's, "retraced the same two year Silk Road journey traveled by Marco Polo seven hundred years ago". I'm envious, of their journey that is, not the young men. Frankly, there were a few times, when reading their book, I was embarrassed by the fact these two men were representing "me" in the form of an American traveler.

Only a few pages into the book, they say something akin to, "...perhaps he was one of those knuckleheads who doesn't believe in global warming...". Is it me or does there seem to be a not so thin layer of sheer rudeness in that remark? It used to be gentlemen and gentlewomen could disagree without resorting to rudeness or ill mannered remarks. Not so, anymore. It used to be folks could have differing opinions and what happened was rather interesting and, perhaps, erudite conversation, not the diatribe that some attempt to pass as conversation.

A very few pages later, they announce they were "rolling around, fighting, in the lobby of a hotel because they had a disagreement". Sheesh, boys: Grow Up.

One other annoyance was toward the last third of the book. They again brag but this time on how well and how liberal the number of curse words they taught a man. Perhaps the man was Tajikistan...I can't really remember but think it was one of those "stan" countries. BTW, "stan" is generally accepted to be a Farsi , or Persian, word meaning country, nation, land, homeland or place. For example, Afghanistan would mean "homeland of Afghan people".

My point is...these men were bragging about how well they curse and how well they taught someone else to curse. They might as well have been bragging about being raised by wolves. Wait. I'd find that more interesting. I'm not taking away from their accomplishment and, as mentioned before, am envious. I'll never have that opportunity as I'm the wrong gender to be traveling in the wilder regions of Muslim countries; even in a chador I wouldn't be safe.

The PBS program, "In the Footsteps of Marco Polo" has been nominated for an Emmy and that's fabulous news for those involved. I've not seen the program but am eagerly anticipating viewing at some future time. In doing a bit of research, I find those who claim these lads did not travel in Marco Polo's footsteps and, in fact, totally missed 2,800 miles because they did missed most of Iran and Afghanistan. Harry Rutstein says O'Donnel and Belliveau, the authors, went instead to
Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan where Marco Polo did not visit. Rutstein says he was the first...and apparently only travel the actual route; he also founded the Marco Polo Foundation and wrote of his travels in The Marco Polo Odyssey.

Another excellent book, Wildflower: An Extraordinary Life and Untimely Death in Africa by Mark Seal, "tells the mesmerizing story of the captivating life and shocking death of world-renowned naturalist Joan Root". If you've enjoyed the stories of Dian Fossey, Jane Goodall and even, Karen Blixen, ...aka Isak Dinesen... you'd, probably, enjoy "Wildflower".

So, here's where I talk about quilting and about time, you say! Perhaps you've seen the Deere quilt before but I've not seen the person for whom this quilt was made so the quilt is still in the studio. The quilts, fleece throw and scarves were hung on the line and took up all the clothesline, from left to right. Even I was pretty impressed -smile-. Four of the quilts were quilt panels that only needed to be hemmed but those are cute panels. Two are Thomas Train and two are the nursery rhyme, "Hey Diddle Diddle, The Cat and the Fiddle...". I've already given away the third Thomas Train quilt panel and hope the little boy liked it.

~ Quilts, throws and scarves crowded the clothesline. ~

~ A stiff wind made photographing the quilts more difficult. ~

~ Thomas Train, back ~

~ Hey Diddle, Diddle quilt panel front ~

~ Two scarves, autumnal colors, to be worn as scarves, shawls or throat coverings. ~

~ Fleece throw, print front with solid brown back ~

I'm still hand quilting some of these, have about four to finish and will then start on Christmas gifts. I've got three of the "little girl" quilts to give away and have to sit down and consider who else has been born; I tend to forget and try to keep a list in the studio. We've been having coolish weather and I've enjoyed quilting but then, do it all summer long anyway. There are about four months until Christmas and if I don't make lists, things simply don't get done. I tend to accomplish a lot more with a list than without.

Until next time,

Blessings ~ quilting ~ good books ~ good authors ~ the studio ~ sturdy shoes for aerobics ~ Silk Road, have always found it fascinating! ~


  1. your neck of the woods is so beautiful that it even makes laundry hanging out amazing to look at( i know they are quilts and not laundry, but even undies hanging on the line would look great)._

  2. Love the pics & the quilts...and as for all the exercise...well I just got back from the doc...I need some *ugh*! She had no real suggestions except get up off your butt and move. So right after this comment I will get up off my butt and move to the "frig"...nah, just kidding about the frig...*wink*!
    Have a beautiful evening...blessings

  3. Dear One,
    You are amazing to all that you do!!!

  4. on cursing: i don't know that it makes life any richer or why or how it has become a part of ANY language at all, but i'll pass. i hope the boys don't learn to do it behind me, coz they certainly DON'T do it in front!

    on the books: you have done some good reading back there, and i appreciate the research and the sharing.

    on the quilts: may i buy the thomas one for aj, please?

    Big hugs!

  5. I think it is a matter of pride now-a-days ( sadly ) for young people to openly ridicule and defy the land that they were raised in. The more rights the country has, the more they seem to deride it...go figure.Unfortunately, I do not think they will appreciate the country of their birth unless the rights are all taken away...and I hope NOT to see that come about.

    You have been very busy and productive making quilts, colorful and pretty quilts.

    You are also way more ambitious and energetic than I intend to be, exercise ...deliberate, out of the home,extra exercise?Good for you!

  6. Oh my have you been busy! I love the quilts and love love love seeing them on the line whipping in the breeze! Maybe I need a computer break to get something done too!!! I may be able to get some sewing in when the garden is completely gone....almost there :-(
    but :-) at the same time.

    As far as excerise...well honey I am sooooooo proud of you. I know it's hard and gets boring and you can think of a million other things to be doing but.....DON"T STOP PLEASE!!!! I BEG YOU TO DO IT FOR ME!!! I used to always think "Boy if I didn't have to work for a living I could really get some exercise in." Geez what happened with that idea? Right out the window about the time I turned in my notice!!! LOL!!! Maybe you will keep me inspired!!!

  7. I look at exercise at the investment that will allow us to do the things we enjoy longer and with more gusto! I like swimming and walking and don't do as much as I should. I don't want to live forever, but I'd like to go out doing the things I like to do if at all possible.

  8. It is great that you are exercising. I love how exercise makes me feel (after I am finished) but I only like to do it if I am accomplishing something or having some fun while doing it. Walking or running in place has never appealed to me. Swimming and dancing is fun. Just don't call it exercise and I am fine with it.

    Your quilts are fabulous. I am amazed at how many you make. The recipients must be so grateful to get such a personal gift.

  9. Congratulations on your dedication to exercising! I'm in awe of you and everything you get accomplished on a regular basis. You're quilts are gorgeous.

    You are inspiring me (yet again) to get off my rear and get on a schedule to work out. Once we get moved in to a new place, we're setting up an exercise room (it'll probably be the garage, but who cares as long as we can get up & get moving.) We have a treadmill, an elyptical machine, and a weight bench that have all been on vacation holding piles of clothing. They will have to get back to work soon!

  10. Welcome Life is Good - you're right, even undies would look great hanging on the line! -grin-

    Welcome Diane - yeah, I'm really trying to adjust my attitude re. exercise. Um, wait a minute...getting a news flash from God here and He says, "no, you're not. Not really." BUSTED! Okay, so I'm going to pray that God will adjust my attitude re. exercise, how's that!?

    Welcome Deanna - you're so kind but I don't think I'm amazing; just stick to it and, eventually, it gets done...whatever "it" is.

    Welcome Cherie - let's talk this week about AJ's quilt.

    Welcome Kathy - wayward pride, to be sure! People who think the USA is too "something", have probably never traveled. A 19 year old boy, traveling from USA to Russia was in a Moscow church for Christmas service last year. Signs in English clearly stated, "no photos." He took photos and there was a plain clothes police officer behind him who physically hauled him outside. Thanks to God and, probably, it being Christmas, the boy wasn't charged just left outside in the cold. Wayward pride.

    Welcome Rebecca - well, I've got time for quilts because the garden didn't do well this year, unfortuantely. Thanks for your words of encouragement, I am exercising.

    Welcome Debbie - you're so right!

    Welcome Leslie - yep, it's all in the attitude, isn't it? -smile-

    Welcome Jules - like Nike says, "Just Do It" -smile-. You've got a lot on your plate, eat the elephant one bite at a time.

  11. Hi Sandra- Just came across this post on quilts and saw the hey Diddle quilt, do you still have it? Do you sell any of your quilts? I like this one because it's a song I sing to my grandkids"-). Please let me know if you would consider selling it. blessings- carol


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